View Full Version : She chews her feet

10th December 2008, 03:47 PM
ALOT and we've tried everything. The vet has her on hydroxyzine and methylprednisolone and it has helped but now it doesn't seem to be working. We got a new puppy--year old cavalier 3 weeks ago and now I'm actually thinking that maybe this is an ocd. I've always said that I didn't think it was but not I'm not so sure. I recently read about spraying listering on their paws and got some yesterday but its not working. Actually I think she's chewing them more. I don't know what to do anymore. I'm tired of wet spots all over my carpet--we're in the process of going to hardwood floors but still will have wet spots.

Any suggestions?

Linda in Georgia, USA

10th December 2008, 08:21 PM
Truman used to do this, but now he rarely does. I'm not sure if this is an OCD behavior or something else. Since you've only had her for 3 weeks then maybe it's caused by stress from being in a new environment? Did she exhibit this behavior prior to you adopting her?

10th December 2008, 09:06 PM
No this is the almost 5 year old cavalier that does this. We've had her since she was just a baby. Thanks for responding.

Linda of Georgia, USA

10th December 2008, 09:42 PM
I'm assuming that the vet has covered all infection/infestation bases? Mites, irritated skin etc...

I have a Cocker with compulsion and obsessive problems and when he gets stressed he paces and chews at his feet (he has made them bleed a few times) along with other disturbing behaviour, but I also have another dog that chews at her feet randomly of her own accord and doesn't seem to cause any problems or show any compulsion behaviours. OCD could be the problem and it could also have to do with stress, is the dog showing ny other signs of stress? Or is it only chewing at the feet?

I would make sure there is no physical reason behind it (keeping hair on feet short, not letting the dog onto chemicals (eg on freshly washed floor), making sure with your vet that all the bases have been covered etc) and only then would I look at a behavioural problem.

Of course, some dogs go through odd phases and just get over them after a while :rolleyes:

10th December 2008, 10:28 PM
I'm sure you've checked for fungal irritation-that's the only time mine have chewed. Could still be allergy and needs different specific med and/or is there a Vet School by you with a dermatology clinic-they have so much experience there.

10th December 2008, 11:13 PM
I have a malamute who used to do this...to the point she made one of her paws a bloody mess. The vet checked for everything (fungal, infection, etc.) including xraying for a foreign body. Nothing could be found. I think some of it was allergies. After changing her to a food with no wheat or soy 2 years ago, it improved a lot. It has been all but eliminated with the grain-free food I went to about 2 months ago.

Make sure the vet eliminates any chance of infection or fungus and then you might try food without grain (I am feeling Taste of the Wild right now).

My vet had suggested the possibility of an OCD type disorder when we were trying to figure out what was up, but since Prednisone would stop the problem and she'd heal, we pretty much eliminated that line of thinking. We were going to try medication for OCD if it kept up.

Just keep trying! Good luck.

11th December 2008, 12:05 AM
I see we're in the same state--you're in Northern Georgia--I'm in middle Georgia. Hour south of Atlanta.

Vet has done those tests etc. and if she's on those pills twice a day the problem is hardly visible. When we got this puppy three weeks ago (he's not the one with the problem so don't get him confused here--lol) I decided I was going to cook for my dogs and have done so. Now what I have been cooking is recipes but mostly rice, veggies and chicken. Now I'm assuming here that rice is a grain so that could be a problem. I probably will have a big problem after doing this cooking for them to go back to dry dog food. My 5 year old tri would go days without eating--pretty finicky and now that I've started cooking she kind of likes my cooking--lol. Maybe potatoes instead of the rice etc? Or organic rice maybe? Now I'm really confused but I'm willing to try everything and deep down in my gut I really don't think she has OCD.

11th December 2008, 09:13 PM
had a dog once that did that and Burt's Bees hot spot ointment worked wonders!!!!! (If you've checked all the medical options)

and they say it's safe in case the dog licked it. I liked it so much I used it on my own dry skin!

14th December 2008, 05:48 AM
Hi :)
I am new here,(first post) I am in Ga also, 45 min north of atlanta. Since I have experience in this area thought I'd respond.
I have a one year old cavalier, Penny, who has an allergy to chicken. When she was a few months old, my vet noticed that her skin was very pink. She suggested I try a different food. Since her food had chicken she suggested trying another protein. I switched her to natural balance venison and sweet potato. After about a week, I noticed a huge difference. Her skin was no longer that dark pink. She never did the foot licking, but she would chew her hip area. she has been better ever since I switched so I have kept her on the NB venison.

BUT I have 2 goldens as well. My female gr is another story entirely. She has awful allergies. She was a big time foot chewer/licker. So much so that her fur on her feet was stained pink from the saliva and she would get secondary infections from the licking. In her case her allergies are the inahled kind. In the spring and fall she flares up the most. During those seasons we bring her to the vet for steroid shots, b/c she gets ear infections, hot spots, eye infections, just suffers miserably.....its a disaster. :cry*ing: Changing her food never helped. But the shots last for several weeks and gets her through the bad times of the year.

Try to find a vet that is well versed in dermatology. it makes a big difference, than going to a vet without that knowledge. Also, you may already know about doing the food trials, but just in case...Make sure when you switch to a different food, that you only feed that food and nothing else. No treats. Feed just the new food for atleast a month, and watch for any changes. If you make too many changes at once, you won't be able to tell what the dog is allergic too. Cutting out the grains is a good idea as well. There are many foods out there now that are grain free. Petco has a wide variety of high quality foods.

I never went the route of allergy testing, my vet felt that the results were mixed.

Sorry this is long.... I hope you find some relief soon. I know how very frustrating allergies are!:bang:

14th December 2008, 07:38 PM
Dos he get enough exercise? enough mental stimulation? many problems Cesar 'The Dog Whisperer' encounters are resolved by exercise - just a thought?